February 18, 2014

Murals of the Mission District, San Francisco

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

With a fairly moderate climate, the Mission District is sometimes called San Francisco's Banana Belt. This is part of the City that didn't burn during the 1906 earthquake so ornate Victorian homes abound. The culture here is largely Hispanic, and yes, there is art--bold and expressive murals just about every place one might venture.

The man shown above on a mural in Clarion Alley is Pico Sanchez--a pioneer artist of the Mission District. If you would like to find out more about this gentle ikon of the Mission, my good friend and arts writer Nancy Ewart wrote an article in Examiner.com about Pico Sanchez in 2010.

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

This fragment of a huge set of murals with an emphasis on women and family is on the side of the "The Women's Building" at 3543 18th Street.

The explosion of art in the Mission began in the late 1960's. And yes, I was there--not on a ladder and behind a brush, but through my employer, a small art supply manufacturer, Durable Arts, located here in Marin County. One of my duties at Durable Arts was to help the U.S. distributor of Politec Artist Colors with their packaging methodology. Brought to market in Mexico by Jose L. Guiterrez in the 1950's, "Politec" preceded the water-base acrylic paint "giants" of today, such as Hyplar, Golden, and Liquitex.

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

Another vivid mural from Clarion Alley, between Valencia and Mission, and 17th and 18th. For an explanation you will just have to use your imagination.

I have done numerous blog posts about the Mission District area over the years, which you can peruse at your leisure by clicking here.

Photographing Marin County - the exhibit and book       


Zoomie said...

My favorite job ever was at SFAI. The students there rock!

AphotoAday said...

Hi ZOOMIE -- am not going to drop names here, but I've known, worked with, and taken classes from a few of the SFAI instructors over the years. When I was a kid I always wanted to go to school there, but ended up at Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara instead. Still remember the place before they did the major expansion. Love wandering around the place on weekends. Great night-time view of Coit Tower from the patio at night.

under construction